College Degree Required?

Rikki Kite

ROSE Blog: Rikki's Open Source Exchange

Mar 24, 2009 GMT
Rikki Kite

Last night I had a conversation with a friend of mine – a freelance writer – about the state of journalism, journalists, bloggers, and "the media." Without going into too much detail, let's just say that I went off on a tangent about people saying "the media" when they mean "bloggers," and how not all bloggers qualify as journalists or members of the media and not all journalists qualify as good writers or researchers and it's all just a big mess that will eventually shake itself out (or so I've been saying for the past few years). I concluded with a "having a journalism degree doesn't automatically mean you're are better qualified to report than the writer with no degree who actually gets out there and digs into research and writes an in-depth, clever blog post that you really wish you'd thought about writing first."

Meanwhile, Esther Schindler has been thinking about computer science degrees and whether they make you a better job candidate than the applicant with programming skill, minus the piece of paper. On the JavaWorld's Daily Brew blog, Esther writes, "A degree does not guarantee that the job applicant learned these skills. Programming skill is not a sun lamp. Being exposed to it doesn't mean you soak it in."

Check out Esther's well-written article, which covers the shortage of IT workers vs. the reasons why employers think a college degree makes someone a better candidate, including the "it demonstrates 'commitment'" claim.

Happy Ada Lovelace Day!

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